Young French Jews
Young French JewsThe Jewish Agency

According to reports from Jewish community leaders in France, there is growing concern about a rise in conversions to Islam from within the Jewish community, with the active encouragement of French Moslems.

Sammy Ghozlan, head of the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Antisemitism in France says he knows of cases where entire families converted to Islam. The 15-year-old daughter of a Jewish doctor wrote that "all the Jews must be killed" after converting.

In many cases the Moslem recruiters who wish to persuade Sephardic Jewish youth to convert, entice them by pointing out their joint background from Islamic countries and the difference between their culture and that of the French Christians.

Ghozlan added that another factor attracting youth is the power of Islam and ISIS to carry out terror attacks in the Western world. The youths do not see Israel as a successful entity as they might have once and identify more with ISIS's success.

A number of years ago it was reported that French Jews were even joining the ranks of ISIS after their conversions and travelling to ISIS- occupied territories. It is estimated that there are 100,000 French converts to Islam from both Jewish and Christian backgrounds but it is difficult to ascertain precise numbers of the Jewish converts.

The Jewish community has set up a de-Islamification fund as well as a hotline for youth wishing to convert in an attempt to combat this phenomenon. Community leaders also raised the worrying issue of whether such youth might utilize the Law of Return and succeed in entering Israel under the guise of their Jewish origins.

Recent years have seen a surge in French Aliya after repeated waves of Islamic terrorism broke out in France. In 2014 some 6,000 French Jews immigrated to Israel, while in 2015 more than 8,000 more arrived in Israel.